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Driving Panic Attacks

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Driving Panic Attacks

Postby Zola318 » Mon Feb 13, 2017 3:00 pm

I'm new here. Suffering from debilitating anxiety and panic attacks while driving. Becoming agoraphobic. My panic attacks are so scary I've called 911 on several occasions and even gotten out of the car on a busy interstate and waved down cars so someone could help me. When im at a red light ive sometimes almost gone right through it because my panic worsens when I feel stuck. Im depressed because I cant really drive at all anymore, i rely on other people. I can;t even get on a highway if somebody else is driving. Im on lots of medications but I dont want to take Ativan or anything like that. Any suggestions?
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Re: Driving Panic Attacks

Postby BBKnight » Fri Apr 21, 2017 8:09 pm

Hi Zola318 i am Brian,

I am no doctor but have had a long relationship with anxiety and panic. The first thing i would like to say is you are a brave person to come here and speak openly i respect you for that, and i would like to let you know you are no less of a person for having this condition it is no fault of yours.
You are on medication but they are not working, talk to your doctor there are many types of meds its simply a case of finding the right one or combination to suit you.
This is the part where i will upset you but trust me its for the greater good.
No drugs currently in use can completely remove your anxiety. They will help you by abating the symptoms of anxiety but the honest truth is the last part of your healing must be done by you. I by no means mean you are alone, i simply mean that through the right method and perseverance and courage on your behalf you will master and heal this condition.

There are many methods to achieving control of ones fears and anxiety's, from meditation to physical exercise to various therapy's.

A simple method that may help you (once you have stabilized on medication) is this:

Consider where you are now, then consider where you want to be. At this moment the two seem far apart so we must make a ladder to get from where you are to where you want to be. We do this one step at a time until we reach our destination.
So in your particular case i would suggest you get a book or a pad this is for your evidence (i will explain that later)
Then you walk to the nearest busy road preferably alone but take a friend if you need support, carry with you a real cold bottle of water. Observe the road the traffic if you feel panic hold the cold water in Your hand the sensation should override mild panic also sip the water staving off the dry mouth of panic. Expose yourself to that environment until you can no longer stand it or until you become calm. Go back home and write down your success (even if you panicked you trying was the success) in the pad or book as visible evidence that you faced your phobia and at this point do congratulate yourself. Next would be perhaps be a short ride as a passenger in a friends car, again when you return home write down the evidence of your success and again have a small congratulation to yourself. These are the steps of the ladder that will get you back where you belong. So step by step you rebuild your confidence until you can do a small solo journey then a longer one then maybe go out in traffic what ever way you need to do it. Step by step day by day round by round this is not a sprint its a marathon. There will be days when you do not succeed pay them no mind focus on your successes written as evidence in your book. Slowly bit by bit rebuild your confidence i know you can do it. =)

I truly wish you swift and full recovery, and when your strong remember to help any you can. =)

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